Thursday, July 12, 2012

Photo-Booth for Keeps!!

So, you're running around planning your wedding and doing everything from checking out venue sites to hiring photographers, caterers and, of course, the DJ! These are some of the big pieces that go into the planning of a wedding, but what about the other 'minor' (so to speak) details, such as the seating arrangement, the center pieces, and finding just the right wedding favor unique to your celebration?  It can be those 'minor' details that eat up most of your time & energy, especially when it comes to finding a keepsake that your guests actually want to keep! 

...And this is where the Photo-Booth comes in to save the day......(or Spiderman....what, it could happen!?)

At most wedding celebrations, couples are very busy doing things like.... let's see...getting married (including all the fun formalities like familyl photos, dances,etc.) & running around mingling with guests to share as much of the experience as possible, but it's not an easy task!

 Having a Photo-Booth at your wedding let's you share something unique & fun with all of your guests and sends them away with a keepsake they'll actually keep! 

Our Photo-Booth gives you unlimited, INSTANT double prints!!  And the fun doesn't stop there.....there are so many options to help customize the Photo-Booth to make your wedding day stand out!

Check it Out.....


Ask most people what their favorite thing is about Photo-booths and you'll hear this answer over & over again, "the props"!!   Just you wait and see....put a basket or table outside your booth and stock it with sillies like fake moustaches, hats, sunglasses & costume beads and let your guests choose their poison!

You can even choose to tailor your props to follow a specific theme; the beach, superheroes, pirates, the eighties and so much more!  


Imagine this: your big adventure of a wedding day is winding down, the guests have departed, your family and friends are heading out and you and you new wife/hubby are finally able to take a deep breath and absorb the day. 

Sadly, you probably won’t get to see your formal wedding photos for a while, but the Photo-booth let’s you sneak an instant peek into what your guests were up to during the big celebration!  Picture it now …a whole book filled with fun, silly (and  yes, sometimes whacky & embarrassing) photos of your guests with a personalized message from them to you.  Unforgettable to say the least!!!


Props add much of the fun and a bit of the uniqueness to the Photo-Booth photos and the shoot itself.  You can further personalize the experience by selecting text (of your choice) to be printed on every photo strip. 

Often, we can add two lines of text and some of the options include:

a)   Couples Names : Last Name(s) or First Names
b)   Date of Wedding
c)   Special message to Wedding Guests

While Photo-Booths are a recently growing trend at Weddings, it is still less common than you think.  The Booth gives your guests a chance to feel more included in your big day and gives everyone a chance to go home with a memory they won’t soon forget!! 

For more information and all the juicy details about renting a Photo-Booth for your Wedding celebration, click here and check out Sound Choice Event's Photo Booth page on our website!  To see more photos from our Photo-Booth, click here to check out our Facebook page photos from our most recent Photo-Booth Weddings!!

Tuesday, June 19, 2012

Is your "Do Not Play List" becoming your 'Do Not Dance" list

Right now, many of our clients are busy little bees planning for their upcoming wedding day(ok, even bees need a shameless plug once in a while!). 

As you go through that process, we want to share some of our expertise and experiences that we think can help make your celebration unforgettable!  
Like many people in the wedding industry (and like many soon-to-be wed couples), we often see and hear about websites providing tips and 'tricks' around everything from working with your wedding caterer to selecting your music and working with a DJ for the ‘big day’. 
Over the next several weeks, we will review and discuss the pros and cons of some of these tips and provide suggestions for how get the most out of working with us as your Wedding DJs.

 Tip #1: The “Do Not Play” list
For most wedding couples, the music is an essential part of their celebration.  It is for that reason that the ‘Play’ or ‘Do Not Play’ lists can be a good guide for us to understand more about your taste in music and your ideas about what will work to get your guests dancing.  You may even notice that many Wedding Planning websites strongly encourage couples to create a concrete play/do-not-play list to ‘guarantee’ that the DJ plays what you want and keeps the dance floor packed. 
One of the popular wedding planning sites suggests the following when creating your play/do-not-playlist:
“The Do Not Playlist is probably more important than your actual "play" list -- make your DJ or band swear up and down that they will follow it no matter how much cash Aunt Milly is waving.”
Ok, so yes, you can make your DJ swear not to stray from your list; however, there is much to consider when selecting the ‘must plays’ and ‘never plays’ for your special day.  First, you’ve taken the time, energy and hard-earned monies to hire a DJ and you should absolutely take advantage of his/her expertise on what may/may not ‘move’ the guests. 
If your main goal at your reception is to hear your favorite songs during the celebration, then only utilizing your playlist might be the best path.  However, if your main goal is to keep your dance floor packed (or a balance of both of the above), then consider this:
If your crowd requests songs on your ‘Do Not Play’ list and/or are not responding ‘well’ (meaning not packing the dance floor) to the songs on your ‘play’ list (for whatever reason), you can give your DJ the wiggle room to try out some other songs and ‘chase the crowd’ (in other words to meet the crowd where they are in terms of music that will make them want to dance). 
The songs don’t necessarily have to be pulled from those stereotypical, most requested wedding songs, such as Celebration (the 3rd most requested wedding song of all time from guests nationally!), but rather your DJ can continuously assess the crowd by watching their response to specific genres and head in that direction for a bit just to get/keep them moving.  If your playlist is important to you, your DJ can use it as the foundation for the 'night' and return to that list throughout the event.
REMEMBER: Whether you’ve been to similar events with all of these same guests or it’s the first time some/many of them have been in a room together, every crowd has their own personality at different events and our goal is to capture that personality and work with it.
Now, your crowd could absolutely pack the dance floor with just the songs you’ve requested to hear (or similar artists), but being pro-active and discussing all the options ahead of time with your DJ gives us a better chance to understand your vision and follow that in order to help make your celebration the spectacular day you imagined!
Sound Choice Events Suggestions:
1.  Decide the goal or role of the music at your reception.  Is your goal to hear the songs on your playlist no matter what with more of a focus on guests interacting OR is your goal to keep the dance floor packed no matter what.  (there are options in between as well to meet a balance of the two)

2.  Discuss the role you want music to play with your DJ ahead of time and ask for suggestions on how to make that happen.  Be sure you are direct about your vision so your DJ is clear on your vision.

3.  If dancing is very important to you at your reception, consider giving your DJ ‘wiggle’ room to ‘chase the crowd’ with their music selections to get the dance floor moving or to keep it packed.

4.  Maintain open communication with your DJ throughout your reception (or assign someone else to do so).  During the celebration, we will check in with you a few times (briefly) to insure that you feel things are running smoothly with the music and to see if there is anything you want to switch up in terms of the type of music we are playing, etc. 
Lastly, it is most likely the case that no one hears those very stereotypical, most requested wedding songs more than your DJ (or possibly that special relative that requests them at EVERY family wedding). 

As DJs (and occasional wedding guests ourselves), we would love nothing more than to have the opportunity to get your guests moving to something a little less familiar and something that is unique to your taste(s)!!  With some pre-event discussions & brainstorming with your DJ about the music you like and your vision of the big day, we can help make your wedding sound as good as it looks!!

Thursday, April 5, 2012

Even if you didn't hit the Mega Millions like we did, you can still have the Wedding of a Lifetime.

Ok, so we didn't quite WIN the lottery, BUT... someone in Massachusetts won some money from that recent Mega Millions drawing & in our own twisted way, we thought that the whole six degrees of separation rule must have to apply here too, yes?

Whew!  It has been quite the weekend here at SCE & as promised Prom season arrived most officially this Friday in the form of us DJ'ing to a packed house for one local high school & rolling out our oh-so-loveable Photo-Booth for another...points awarded to the group of students waiting in line for the booth who started their own dance party and drew quite the crowd for themselves!!

Saturday saw a few doubles for us...starting off with a very rowdy crowd at Hannah's Bat Mitvah at the Beth El Temple Center in Belmont that ended with the entire family young & old (er) singing Journey's Don't Stop Believin' (most popular Karaoke song ever..really!) led by a very fun group of Hannah's older cousins!  They ate up the photo-booth throughout the whole event and just had the best time!!  Our night was full of parties, and most memorable was a Prom celebration for a local Newton High School that requested everything from New Boyz to Lionel Richie!

Sunday saw more doubles and tired, but happy DJs as we shared a very important walkathon with a local non-profit organization & ended off our evening with a very talented group of kids at Wellesley's Elm Bank Reservation who were celebrating their recent production of a little something related to ...umm...OZ (less the HBO series, more the one with the yellow brick road--because the HBO series done by kids would be...well...just kind of creepy and lord of the fly-ish, no?).

More weekday corporate events have arrived on our doorstep recently.  These events are always so much fun because we get to sick the game-show on them...boss vs. vs. co-worker, spiced up with a little Pat Sajak or Steve Harvey (Harvey, you the Family Fued--or we can just say me if you want to get technical) & they always leave with the biggest smiles. Of course, we're not there in the morning to see who gets the pink slips, but all in all everyone seems pretty friendly!!

The business-E side of things has seen us finalizing the changes to our webpage, purchasing heaps of new equipment (ok, heaps may be an exaggeration, but ....a lot!) & just working to get the word out about all the cool stuff we're offering these days!

We leave you this fine evening with a tip to help make your wedding day pop:

Most couples want the dance floor hoppin' all night (or day) during their reception and one of the best ways to make that happen is to be flexible and allow your DJ to "follow the crowd" or in other words, play music that seems to pack the dance floor, even if it steers a little away from your playlist.  Remember, that while you may know the guests and be familiar with their tastes, that crowd together as one at your celebration has it's own spirit and may just surprise you when it comes to what will make them dance.  

Until next time... 

Monday, March 12, 2012

Springing Ahead & Movin' Right Along.....

Hello All!

It's been several months since our last blog entry (why is this starting to sound like a confession?) and there has been so much happening with Sound Choice Events!  We did a sort of experiment by utilizing our Facebook page as our main stream of communication & while that's been serving us well, we miss doing the blog and realize that using both as part of our marketing strategy makes the most sense!  

Be sure to check out our FB page, where we post all of our gig pictures & videos!

And, so it shall be... 

So, what have we been doing one might ask?--everything!  We are in full swing of the heavy booking season and have had meetings non-stop throughout the week & weekend (on off hours).  Gigs are going strong with a ton of Weddings, Mitvahs, & Corporate Events. We've also recently had the chance to work with a few amazing non-profit organizations for celebrations & fundraisers....and let us not forget that Prom season is in bloom!  

Our Photo-Booth bookings have been off the charts this season & the trend continues.  We've had a large number of Wedding Couples add this option to their DJ Packages and are seeing more and more Mitzvahs & High Schools requesting it as well--yay!


Lastly, we were nominated for & awarded the Bride's Choice Award from Wedding Wire again this year & they had this to say about our services:

{Natick, MA} – January 23, 2012 – WeddingWire, the nation's leading wedding Marketplace, is excited to announce Sound Choice Events has been selected to receive the prestigious Wedding Wire Bride’s Choice Awards 2012 for DJ!

The esteemed annual awards program recognizes the top local wedding vendors from the Wedding Wire Network who demonstrate excellence in quality, service, responsiveness and professionalism within the wedding industry. While many industry awards are selected by the organization, Sound Choice Events was selected based on its stellar reviews from past newlywed clients.

Sound Choice Events is recognized as part of the top five percent of wedding professionals in the Wedding Wire local vendor community, comprised of over 200,000 wedding professionals throughout the United States and Canada. The Bride’s Choice Award recognizes the best local wedding vendors across 20 service categories, from wedding venues to wedding photographers, based on their overall professional achievements throughout the past year.

“Wedding Wire is thrilled to honor the success of the top-rated wedding professionals within the Wedding Wire Community,” said Timothy Chi, CEO of Wedding Wire. “Since the launch of the Bride’s Choice Awards™ program four years ago, thousands of outstanding wedding professionals have been recognized by the bridal community for their supreme service and dedication to the wedding industry. It is with great pleasure that we congratulate Sound Choice Events for their continued professionalism and commitment to enriching the wedding planning experience for engaged couples.”

We are happy to announce that Sound Choice Events is one of the very best DJs within the Wedding Wire Network, which includes leading wedding planning sites Wedding Wire, Project Wedding,, Martha Stewart Weddings, and Weddingbee. We would like to thank our past clients for taking the time to review our business on Wedding Wire. Thanks to their positive feedback, we were able to receive the Wedding Wire Bride’s Choice Awards™ for 2012. 

It's a cool recognition & we're happy that our hard work seems to be paying off and giving couples the celebration they envisioned on their Wedding Day!

Happy Spring!

Thursday, September 1, 2011

Liar Liar Fogs on Fire!!.....

That’s right…here we go.  It has so been too long & so much has been going on that it’s hard to stop and “smell the gerberas" (everyone says roses) and catch up!  We sure smelled something on one of our most recent BIG jobs, where we did an eight foot light truss, took care of the A/V & had our way with a fog machine!

It was actually a pretty challenging night, as we began setup approximately eight and a half hours before show time, and two of the three pieces of equipment we rented decided to take a break and not work!!  This is why we get to jobs earl y & have back-up equipment options, so we can deal with any unforeseen issues—both of these items should’ve worked and it’s extremely unusual for two major pieces of equipment to go haywire at the same job.  Fortunately, we called the company for the FOG machine (because it was electrocuting the event staff) and they delivered a new machine, arriving just in time (with none to spare) for us to start the fog when the guests of honor entered the party.  The other piece of equipment that kicked the bucket was also replaced with just minutes to spare by a very kind venue that was willing to loan us their projector…ugh!!

While we were scrambling behind the scenes, the clients never became aware of the problems, because we delivered right in time & it wound up being an excellent night that ended with a Marilyn Monroe drag performer jumping out of a cake and surprising the guests of honor!!

Yet again, we’ve been busy little bees and having so much fun taking photos of our… new…PHOTOBOOTH!  Oh Yeah, Sound Choice Events is now the proud owner of a brand new shiny photo-booth and everyone from Wedding clients to Sweet Sixteen clients are eating it up!  What better way for your guests to take home a little bit of your celebration as a memory (and even leaves one for you)?!  And, we’ve even got props to boot; funky hats, outrageous sunglasses and beads galore to give your guests a chance to yuck it up and have a little more fun!  It’s definitely been a great addition to our already kickin collection of equipment & such a blast to watch everyone enjoying it!!

Jobs have been plenty recently and all over the map, literally and figuratively.  We’ve been everywhere from New Hampshire to Rhode Island & in-between doing weddings, mitzvahs, corporate parties and birthdays.

Speaking of the map, Sound Choice attended the DJ Expo in Atlantic City just a few weeks ago & picked up some really good information AND some new fun things to play with (new equipment yay!). 

Our office  as well has been busier than a go-go dancer (how busy is that?) as we continue with our Social Media push and updating the Sound Choice website to make it easy as pie for you to locate all the fantastic services we offer!

Signing off for tonight…remember to check out our Facebook page to see photos of all our most recent jobs! 

Thursday, June 2, 2011

"It’s Friday, Friday, Gotta get down on Friday…"

Not only is it Friday (and we are so shamefully playing that song right now), it’s Memorial Day weekend and we are pumpin’ out the music for another great prom crowd here in Tewksbury.  We’ve been as busy as beavers and have a packed schedule for the next ten plus days straight (or forward-however you like to travel)!  

We’ve got every DJ we know going strong on events such as our weekly trivia, a new karaoke night, birthday parties, corporate functions,  after-prom parties and wedding, weddings and more weddings!!…and it’s been like this for a few months now!  Our FB friends may be able to attest to this, as this entry is the first blog we’ve done since April!! 

A few “notables’ over the past two months have been: 

We did a wedding ‘taster’ at the Publick House in Sturbridge for couples having their ceremonies & receptions at their venue.  We did our first ever Boston Marathon gig, playing music atop Heartbreak Hill (and now I have that Elvis song in my head!). 

We’ve also done a number of college and high school formals, corporate events and fundraisers, including some huge light shows and our ever infamous game show (another plug for one of my favorite little toys!).

Back in the SCE office….we’re continuing to update the Sound Choice Events website with new package options, language and features to make it more user friendly or just plain old easier to find all of our better than bubble gum services (nooo-you’re right, I really didn’t just write that—admit it though, bubble gum has a lot to offer!).  Our FB is also taking off, adding new fans like hotcakes since making the decision to post all party photos taken by SCE right onto our FB site (shameless plug)!

Bringing it around to the equipment side of the world, this month saw us buying a new laptop, returning said laptop and saving our original laptop from the brink of extinction –thank you Costco!  To keep up the fun, we replaced two subwoofers and an amp after a very large party where it seems the plugs were dancing to their own beat--meaning, jiggling loose overworking every bit of electricity they could and then for the grand finale-blowing (or smoking some of the kids like to call it these days—ha ha)!  I know, we said it too, “really”?   Apparently, a rare occurrence, it has been known to happen to novice and professional alike.  While the subs did blow during the show, we had backup equipment that let us keep the music going without interruption …..“never let em see you sweat” yada yada! 

As we leave you this fine Friday evening, we want to share a little current event music talk-- mostly because we were so trying to figure out which one of us owes the other money--ha ha!  Our team of DJ’s had been in a furious little debate recently (ok, and for about all of five minutes) about the validity of those funny little rumors that Bob Dylan was the original creator of the song Friday, recently released by Rebecca Black, especially with the sudden appearance of “a lost recording from Bob Dylan’s Basement Tapes”.    Check out the “Dylan” version of the song and click HERE to read the article about how that ‘Dylan’ recording came into existence.

Yes, of course, we realize that this is a ridiculous conversation, but so many people have been talking about and sending around this so-called “lost” Dylan song that we just had to put it out there.  I’m not sure if the SCE team will ever agree on this issue, but we sure are trying!! Well, actually, since those in question have now been docked one gig's pay for even thinking that this was an actual Dylan song, I think we got it settled!  

--Signing off from Tewksbury, goodnight Boston (wherever you are—which we assume is the same place all of our sleep has gone!).

Sunday, April 10, 2011

Boston Globe checking us out.....!!

The Boston Globe interviewed us about Mobile DJs in 2009.....check out the article!!!!

Highly requested: Despite the poor economy, mobile DJs are in demand.. 

Having unloaded his speakers, two CD players, and two fat books filled with 5,000 CDs, Jason Bohanon is ready to get the party started at the Elks Lodge in Melrose.

"OK, we're going to power up the dance floor," says Bohanon, the 35-year-old owner of A True Family Affair DeeJay Service, based in Lynn. "There is a request book up here."

As Bohanon played Beyoncé's "Irreplaceable" and Kanye West's "Heartless" at the Sweet Sixteen celebration for twins Barbara and Sasha Valliere, six teens surrounded his laptop, which listed the songs in his CD arsenal. Before there is a lull in the action, Bohanon turns on the fog machine and takes to the dance floor to teach the teens the Cotton-Eyed Joe line dance, the first of four dances he would teach that night. At the end of the four-hour gig, Bohanon had earned $400 plus a $60 tip.

Mobile DJs - those who play at weddings, bar mitzvahs, birthday parties, school dances, and corporate events - work in one of the most lucrative areas of the field. They may not acquire the fame of a radio DJ, but the money is good. The average rate for mobile DJs nationally ranges from $600 to $900 for a four-hour event, according to the National Association of Mobile Entertainers (NAME). That's substantially more than the $25-per-hour rate that entry-level club DJs earn (though famous club DJs can earn as much as $5,000 an hour).

The mobile DJ business is holding up despite the recession. Some DJs have seen business rise compared to a year ago. Some of the increased work is the result of DJs hustling more for jobs, but some of it reflects consumers' reluctance to hire bands, which are usually more expensive. At the same time, DJs face new competition these days from people who have lost their jobs or are trying to make extra money on the side, as digital music has made it easier for people to get into the industry.

"We're now competing with iPods and bottom feeders," says Raffi Kebabjian owner of DJ Raffi in Watertown. "People with full-time jobs who will go out for $500 or $600, because that's what they make after taxes for the whole week." Ostensibly, no training is necessary to become a DJ, but all the DJs interviewed started their careers at their college radio stations. Although amateur DJs may use an iPod, the basic equipment of a professional DJ includes an amplifier, two speakers, a music player, a wired and wireless microphone, and a basic lighting system, says Robb Smith, owner of the FAME DJ School in the Tampa Bay area.

That set up may cost $1,200 to $1,500 for an entry-level DJ has seen its membership double to 10,000 compared to five years ago, says Steve Gomez, director of membership and marketing. "Weddings, bar mitzvahs, private parties have really picked up," he says.

Peter Hallisey, owner of Boston Sound Choice Events in Waltham, says work is up about 10 percent as a result of him doubling his advertising and promotional efforts. Tom Bruhl, a mobile DJ who sings and plays sax, flute, and guitar, thinks his eponymous business based in Raynham is a little bit better or at least as good as last year's. As an instrumentalist and DJ, he's able to satisfy clients who want live music but can't afford a band.

The job offers a lot of variety. Hallisey has worked an erotic film festival. Bohanon fills his calendar with weddings in the spring and summer, then does school functions in the fall and winter to get some respite from the adults. As a result, says Bohanon, "I don't burn out as easy."

During the busy spring and summer season, DJs often have to scramble. Hallisey has done 13 parties in a week, he says, "including a triple on one day. That beats you up." The DJs often have freelancers to call upon for help when a lot of clients are booked.

Weddings constitute 90 percent of Kebabjian's business. And the wedding genre is doing well.
"We have not really felt the economy as much," Kebabjian says, "because people are still getting married. They're still spending money. We do have clients who want to go with smaller packaging."

Unlike radio DJing or club DJing, these DJs cater to the happiness of their clients, which means they sometimes don't have the musical freedom their peers have. Some of Kebabjian's clients give him a list of songs and ask him not to stray from it. Others provide more latitude.

"The most successful weddings are when I'm given some direction but yet given the freedom," he says. "When I'm locked into a crowd and when I get into that groove, it's the most amazing feeling. The adrenaline flows, and I start playing from the heart. And when I do that you get the most amazing experience."

© Copyright 2009 Globe Newspaper Company.
Vanessa E. Jones   March 7, 2009